Ain't It Cool News (
DVD News

Harry's DVD Picks & Peeks: 3rd wk of June 2010: Jarmusch, Hughes Bros, Dog Food, Vengeance & more!!!

Hey folks, Harry here with a rundown of the titles being unleashed today. I hope you enjoy the list, as usual the pics and linked titles go to Amazon, where you can learn more about the title linked, or even purchase the item. Doing so would contribute a small portion of the item’s price to help keep this column going. Now – discover MYSTERY TRAIN! Tuesday, June 15th, 2010

One of my most beloved kidhood film experiences that rocks with the power of QUEEN and probably one of the gaudiest non-Schumacher productions ever concocted. As someone that was raised on Alex Raymond FLASH GORDON Sunday Pages (one of the collections that my Dad treasured) I was always disappointed that this wasn't a bit more serious - but then, that wasn't the point. This was a high camp adaptation of FLASH GORDON and in those terms - it is nearly impossible to hate on this. QUEEN's music should have never worked, but it does - magnificently so. The garish colors simply created a fantasy universe unlike anything we'd seen before or sense. Proof that it doesn't need to be real to be real fun. All hail Brian Blessed, Timothy Dalton and Max Von Sydow!!! And can we all agree that the reason to have this film on Blu Ray - is so we can all scientifically exam every last from of Ornella Muti's Princess Aura? I'm not sure how this and DARKMAN escaped me last night. I've watched both Blu Rays - but some reason when assembling the list, my eyes glossed over these two GOT TO GET releases. Very much worth it.

This is Sam Raimi's SHADOW & BATMAN film combined with a smidggen of HOUSE OF WAX. And ya know what? I've been a card-carrying member of the DARKMAN RULES SOCIETY since this weird oddball of a blast exploded in 1990. Liam Neeson's performance is something rather amazing to watch here. It is... unhinged. Some of the composited shots look pretty funky by today's standards, but this delirously insane production absolutely delights. Essentially the same disc as the HD-DVD version. Which was outstanding.

MYSTERY TRAIN (Criterion Blu)
Freshman year of college – while reading the Austin Chronicle, I saw a promo pass give away for something called MYSTERY TRAIN directed by somebody named Jarmusch. Up until this particular fated screening, I was in love with film – in a way that people that love Mainstream films and that love Vintage films love films – but I was about to have something new to chew on, to obsess and get all compulsive about. The new American Wave in Independent film. The 90s had most of it, but 1989’s Jarmusch classic… MYSTERY TRAIN. A film about a scene, a lifestyle, a rhythm, a way to strut. MYSTERY TRAIN was my PULP FICTION. By the time Tarantino launched that Indie Film scene through the roof… I was already talking about this story about seemingly unrelated storylines that all converge in this hipper than hip universe that Jarmusch created for Memphis. The Japanese Tourists… so fucking cool. Watching this movie the other day with Yoko was so much fun. I love the stressing of Carl Perkins – I LOVE SCREAMIN’ JAY HAWKINS!!! I love the texture of Memphis, which is so beautifully rendered on this Blu Ray. I fucking love the uncompressed monaural soundtrack – giving this that vinyl wall of sound sound that just makes me smile. This is my first and very favorite Jarmusch film. He’s still a vital filmmaker and I love NIGHT ON EARTH and STRANGER THAN PARADISE… but MYSTERY TRAIN was a transformational film for me. It started me searching for the “odder” filmmakers at the video store. This was the same point in my life that I began discovering the Coens, Raimi, Peter Jackson – followed quicky by Tarantino, Linklater, Rodriguez… this was also when I started devouring Film Noir, the American Gangster films, the 50s musicals, Asian cinema of the 80’s and 90s. And I can say all that started with MYSTERY TRAIN. A gateway film for me. It led me to alternative cool video stores like VULCAN and I LUV VIDEO… It led me to the Austin Film Society and advance screenings in general. MYSTERY TRAIN was a life changer. This is a movie that cries to be devoured, digested and discussed. It is… a complete evening all by itself. The conversation starter. And at the very least, it really makes ya want to check out Memphis. Criterion gives you the following extras: Q&A with Jarmusch in which he responds to questions sent in by fans Documentary on Mystery Train's locations and Memphis's musical history On-set photos by Masayoshi Sukita, and behind-the-scenes photos New and improved English subtitle translation PLUS: A booklet featuring essays by writers Peter and Dennis Lim Collectible poster Strongest possible recommendation. Fantastic film!

I really really really like this movie, BUT the Mila Kunis ending – grates me like you wouldn’t believe. It seriously hasn’t sat well, although EVERYTHING ELSE about it is bliss! I love Denzel, Oldman and Ray Stevenson – so so much. The very end ending just not so much. That said, I seem to be in a minority with that feeling. Pay attention closely to the soundtrack and how it relates to camera movement. I noticed while watching this the other night, that you’ll begin to hear something to the left or the right side of the screen, then the camera would turn to the sound. Really is a neat little sound mixing bit that they use a few times in the film. Looks beautiful on Blu – and as for extras? Maximum Movie Mode: 40 minutes of picture-in-picture commentary with Denzel Washington and the Hughes Brothers, and 10 Focus Points Additional scenes A Lost Tale: Billy--animated short covering Carnegie's backstory Starting Over: Explore the role we might play in reshaping society after a global catastrophe Soundtrack: Co-director Allen Hughes and composer Atticus Ross compare notes about the soundtrack's construction and deconstruction Eli's Journey: Probe the historical and mythological roots of the film's central themes

Absolutely not worth it at all. None of it works for me. Not the premise, the characters, the humor… it just rang untrue and unneeded. Watch ROMAN HOLIDAY instead. The guy is dreamier and so is the girl in that one.

The most important thing you may ever choose to do. Check the sack and sit back. MACGYVER is on!

I really like this film. Essentially a film that explores the lengths that we as a society may go to feel safe and to keep us safe. The film is a nightmare scenario about a man who may have placed nuclear devices in multiple major cities in the United States. He is caught in advance of the explosions… and is extremely interrogated. By Sam Jackson. And Sam is all kinds of awesome, as is Carrie Anne Moss and Michael Sheen. And you come away from the film wondering, what would we do in this situation?

I love that the world changed on this film. This movie has had quite a journey. Almost universally loathed, until one magical day the subconscious of the audience began to hear the laugh track – to get the giggles and to relax and have a whole helluvalot of fun with a gleefully retarded bit of bliss. NOW – the sad news. No extras.. I want crazy elaborate extras. Every bit of footage shot. I want all the doc footage. We need to see every scrap of everything about the making, conception and execution of SHOWGIRLS. But, I’ll take the movie for now!

I think it is hilarious that Owen Glieberman thinks Michael Cera’s inner Douche is a Badass. Now, don’t get me wrong, I love Michael Cera’s Inner Douche – as that Douche does hilariously douchey over the top lunacy about as wonderful as you could hope for. I love the idea that Michael Cera’s dad was Steve Buscemi. For some reason, that concept alone is comedy gold. The notion that your dad is Steve Buscemi and that he’s banging hot chicks while Michael Cera is a Virgin… is AWESOME! I just really like this crazy universe. And I think Portia Doubleday could get Jesus cursing.

A sickening vision of the very probable future, by someone that has been right before. It is gonna get worse. If you see TOY STORY 3 this weekend and you just feel too positive about life, watch this. It’ll set ya right. Everyone should probably take a look at this. It is a very reasoned argument about what is coming next. But thanks to the iPad, all of this will be averted.

One of the great thematic trilogies ever made. Like RED, WHITE, BLUE. Like THE MAN WITH NO NAME. These 3 films are of a type, an exploration of a theme. Tartan continues to properly exploit Park Chan Wook’s greatness. You know THIRST is on NETFLIX INSTANT. Click.

Watch THE STEPFATHER… now, rewatch LOST. If you thought Locke gave ya the creeps before… JESUS! I had not seen this. Not sure how I missed it, guess it didn’t play Wichita Falls in 1987. And for some reason I never found it on video. This is a damn fine slasher/serial killer style flick – and while it is all kinds of ridiculous feeling, IT IS ALL TRUE! Giggle. Locke is such a good Vorhees!

Now – if you know anything about Burma, you probably don’t WANT to see what is in this riveting documentary. Maybe you’ve seen BEYOND RANGOON. Maybe you’ve just heard about it from Stallone. Whatever… realize there are places on this planet where it is all wrong. Where evil is dominant and not in decline. This film causes a strong gut reaction. To be seen.

This could very well be my favorite film that Tim League has introduced me to. That the director is like just getting pubes blows my mind. As the film is extremely grown up. The way the story is told heightens everything. Do not gang bang and od a handiman’s daughter. Seriously bad idea. A film to watch with that Vengeance trilogy. If nothing else – study these fight scenes Hollywood. MORE LIKE THIS!

Before he was a Blind Badass Samurai – Shintaro Katsu was THE BLIND MENACE. A vile blind masseur. Up to zero fucking good. I loved this. For one, just seeing a younger Shintaro Katsu doing the blind stuff. This is a real jewel to finally get to see. Very recommended.

Sue me, I like 2069: A SEX ODYSSEY. I do think it would make for an excellent Porn Remake. INVASION OF THE BEE GIRLS is funny – in a – you’ll make yourself laugh while watching it. Because you won’t be able to not comment verbally. And honestly, I’ve not seen DR. DILDO’S SECRET – which is thankfully going to be remedied. The two I have seen were fun, while not entirely satisfying to a genre lover wanting more from his genre porn. None of these threatens FLESH GORDON’s reign!
That’s it for this week. Not much coming out today I know. Well next week, Robert Pattinson in the astonishing REMEMBER ME, Matt Damon in GREEN ZONE, AVATAR THE LAST AIRBENDER: THE COMPLETE BOOK 1, THE LAST STATION, SHE’S OUT OF MY LEAGUE, A STAR IS BORN BluRay, CLOUDY WITH A CHANCE OF MEATBALLS Bluray 3D Version (the future is here), RED DESERT (Criterion Blu), DEATH RACE 2000 Blu, FUEL, CLOSE-UP Criterion Blu, TROMEO AND JULIET Blu, WOLF MOON,

Readers Talkback
comments powered by Disqus